There is always something new in the ecommerce industry - some new technology, strategies, or customer demands. Whether you are just starting out with your online business or a veteran in the industry, you need to keep up with the emerging trends in ecommerce. Otherwise, you can easily fall behind your competitors.
With the worldwide rollout of vaccines, the world is entering the new normal. More people can now go outside, and establishments are opening up again. So the question now is, what does this mean for the ecommerce industry? How will it fare in the new normal? And most importantly, how will it stack up against traditional business?
With that, here are the ecommerce trends 2022 to look out for.
Online shopping continues to grow
There is no stopping ecommerce. Even when physical stores are opening again, consumers still turn to online shopping for most of their needs. In fact, a recent study shows that demands for B2B ecommerce will continue to rise up to $18.57 trillion in 2026. This is almost double the figures from 2020.
This goes to show that ecommerce is here to stay. The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated digital transformation in various aspects of people’s lives. In the past two years, consumers became reliant on online shopping and deliveries for their needs. Not only is it convenient, but it also better ensure their health and safety as they don’t have to go out and shop.
Having experienced the benefits of online shopping themselves, consumers nowadays consider it as a natural part of their lives rather than just an alternative. Having your own ecommerce platform is more than just a luxury. It is now a necessity if you want to remain relevant and competitive in the market. This goes for businesses of all sizes—from small businesses to enterprises.
Mobile shopping gets optimized
Other than convenience, online shopping also provides comfort for your consumers. They can do their shopping anytime and anywhere of their own choosing. Moreover, they can do it without exhausting themselves by going to different places just to find product they’re looking for.
You can further boost such comfortability and flexibility by optimizing your ecommerce platform for mobile devices and even smartwatches. This way, your consumers can easily purchase from your business through the palm of their hands (or their wrists).
According to Statista, global mobile commerce reached $3.56 billion in 2021. This follows a continuous increase since 2016 and is expected to maintain such a trend in the coming years. The rising number of smartphone and tablet users contributes to the increase in demand for mobile ecommerce.
Thanks to current technology, handheld devices are powerful enough to run different apps and websites—both offline and online. Nonetheless, it is important that you optimize your marketplaces or ecommerce website for the smaller screen. Otherwise, your ecommerce platform might look unpresentable and unreadable in your consumers' eyes.
There are different ways to optimize your ecommerce platform for mobile devices. Most of which depend largely on your platform’s interface. For example, if you have your own ecommerce website, consider using photos that automatically resize the photo to adapt to your screen. This goes the same for fonts, embedded videos, and other links.
AR/VR technology enters ecommerce
A common complaint in online shopping is that it cannot replicate the same feeling and experience to physical stores. When shopping online, your consumers cannot physically pick up the product to try them on or inspect it to their heart’s content. For many, this can be a crucial factor in their purchase decisions.
Hence, more ecommerce businesses plan to invest in immersive technology such as augmented and/or virtual reality (AR/VR). To differentiate the two, augmented reality uses a real-world setting, while virtual reality is completely virtual. Likewise, you can easily access AR using your smartphones. On the other hand, you will need a separate device such as a VR headset to access VR.
Using AR/VR technology allows your consumers to interact with a digital version of your products as if they are really there. Through AR, your consumers can see how a 3D and life-like digital model of your product would look like in their surroundings. This is great for furniture and equipment. They can also use it to “try out” outfits or jewelry, allowing consumers to see how a particular outfit would look on them.
AR/VR technology paves the way to countless possibilities for ecommerce. Thanks to advancements in technology, AR/VR software is more accessible than ever. In fact, eMarketer reports that more than 83 million people use AR on some kind of device, and these figures are set to rise to 95.1 million by 2022.
Omnichannel commerce surges
Businesses today operate in multiple channels—from virtual spaces to physical ones. This allows them to reach out to more customers and meet their different demands. To help maintain cohesive branding throughout all their platforms, consider leveraging omnichannel commerce.
According to Statista, 48% of global ecommerce companies are investing in omnichannel commerce. This approach helps maintain consistency in your branding no matter what channel you use. This includes your ecommerce website, other marketplaces, and even your brick-and-mortar stores. It ensures that your customers can enjoy a seamless shopping experience no matter what channel they choose.
Not all ecommerce software can handle multiple channels at once. Omnichannel commerce often requires a specific solution that can manage both your virtual and physical stores. The same is true with the rest of your digital ecosystems such as some examples of inventory management software, sales software, and marketing software. If you plan on having multiple channels for your ecommerce, you need to make sure that all your processes and data remain centralized.
More business joins social commerce
One of the top business trends 2022 is the rise of social commerce. There are now 4.62 billion social media users worldwide. Businesses take advantage of this by using their social platforms to sell their products and services directly to their consumers. They can engage with their customers, advertise their products, provide customer support and even complete purchases without needing to move to a different website or channel.
This goes to show that social media isn’t just a tool for marketing. It can be an extension of your digital shopping experience for your customers. You can see it in the form of TikTok Shopping and Facebook Marketplace or Shop.
There is a need for better personalization
Personalization plays a critical role in ecommerce. It helps you keep track of your consumers’ demands and behaviors so you can tailor-fit their online shopping experience according to their demands and needs.
Thanks to modern technology, such as AI-powered ecommerce solutions, you can provide a better and more accurate personalized experience for your customers. Using machine learning and AI allows you to maximize the data you receive from each interaction with your customers. You can then use it to customize product recommendations, email messages, and sales journeys.
Consumers demand different payment methods
Nowadays, 72% of consumers prefer contactless transactions over face-to-face ones. Hence, another one of the B2B ecommerce trends that will surely continue in the future is the demand for different payment methods. Multiple financing options upon checkout will become a must-have feature for all ecommerce businesses. Include payment methods such as credit/debit card payment, bank-to-bank transfer, digital wallet, and even cryptocurrency.
Keeping up with the times
The ecommerce industry is always evolving. With each new technology emerging, consumers’ demands and behaviors change as well. So keep an eye out for all the latest trends if you want to survive the tight competition in the market. And when you are just starting out with your ecommerce journey, keep in mind these essential requirements for your ecommerce business.
2022 is yet another year full of possibilities and potential for the industry. So go ahead and explore what the future has to offer for your business.